According to forecasts, oil prices will rise. It would seem that else is necessary for happiness? It is possible to routinely collect income earned and rental, while talking about the successes in the economy, in General, do not rush to get off the “oil needle”. But with the rise in oil prices changed the balance of power in the oil market. And this is a new challenge for Russia. And not only economic.
The economy does not operate in an ethical categories, but just in his own way. It always tends to a certain balance. Its justice in the fact that each turn in its development has a different side. Almost never, these turns won one. Winning is, but it always loses, so there is a chance and someone else.
The oil market is a perfect illustration. When oil prices are falling, shops are getting momentum, exporters — chance to reduce the cost of production and to rebuild the structure of the economy. When prices rise, importers develop energy-saving, turned to new energy sources, exporters receive a cash cushion to think about the future and to develop their technological base.
So in theory. And what happens in practice today? Although oil reserves are growing, forecasters believe that OPEC+ did the trick: the oil prices from the current level of decline, at least this year will not be.
The energy information administration of U.S. Department of energy (EIA) in February increased the forecast average price of Brent crude oil in 2018, with $59,74 to $62,39 per barrel in 2019, the average price of a barrel drops to $61,51. The European Commission on 7 February did the same: forecast of oil prices elevated, and the “step” in comparison with previous estimates is highly significant. It is assumed that the price of Brent crude oil will average $68,3 per barrel in 2018 and $64.2 b in 2019. Oil, according to this forecast, will rise in 2018 at an impressive 24.6%, and in 2019 will drop to 5.9%. However, forecasters are like children. They tend to forget their own statements and issuing a new forecast after a month, you can, without blushing, to indicate the opposite trend.
But today Russia it is time to declare a national holiday — Day of unity with the barrel. Present assessment Sergei Guriev, is not forgotten in Russia, economist, today working in the EBRD, this February 8: “of Course, Russia benefits greatly from higher oil prices. And we believe that at current oil prices not only the national welfare Fund (NWF) will not end, but, most likely, at the end of the year it will be higher than at the beginning, due to the fact that the budget is based on $40 per barrel. If oil is above $40 per barrel, Russia will not face a budget crisis in the foreseeable future”. Touched, and many are already there. Customs officers reported that Russia’s revenues from oil exports in 2017 increased by 26.6% compared with the year 2016 and is $93,306 billion And this despite the decrease of physical volume of exported oil by 0.8% to 252,637 million tons.
Well, where is it now, the “oil curse”? The fly in the ointment, however, is still there. Though, perhaps, a bucket.
In the already cited February EIA report, there are other numbers. Oil production in the US reached the level of 10,251 million barrels a day. It is an absolute American record. The growth of prices was awakened by shale production in the US, and its pace can continue to grow. EIA predicts that in 2018-2019, the increase in average production to 10.6 and 11.2 million barrels per day respectively, this means that the US is preparing to become a world leader in oil production behind Russia and Saudi Arabia. They are already 60% dependent on oil, in the future this figure will continue to grow.
“The day of unity with the barrel” in Russia may be short. Oil prices have responded to the EIA figures. But forecasters are not worth anything, not confused at all by the fact that the reaction of prices to the increase in the us production they had not foreseen, blue-eyed to redirect their following the predictions and signs of the movement in oil prices.
There are more meaningful conclusions. Sand, as was shown by O. Henry, a poor substitute for oats. Now compare have agreement within OPEC+ with the development of new technologies of oil production. To wherever this comparison, the conclusion that the way forward lay this technology.
Russia is ready to start shale oil production, but the problem is wider. We need new technologies, including in the most important for the country’s Energy sector. But these technologies fall under the existing sanctions. The main advantage of the Russian economy — the supply of hydrocarbons can partially be used for geopolitical purposes, but in the near term may be a bit in the result of the expansion of the US presence in the production of hydrocarbons. All together this means that the sooner will be able to stop the war of sanctions and return to work, the more chances of the Russian economy.
There’s the counterargument: when were no sanctions, Russia was not able to become something more than a raw materials appendage of the developed countries. The answer is: so she was okay with it. That is, words about diversifying the economy, of course, sounded, but hope for high oil prices outweighed the determination of the transition to concrete action. We must learn lessons. No one, except us, the country is not improving. And modernization under sanctions almost impossible. So, we must make a priority the lifting of sanctions. Otherwise there will be proper growth of the economy based on new technologies and social progress.